14 years of foreign intervention has brought the people of Afghanistan nothing but mass slaughter and destruction.

Lindsey German

Every time politicians propose a new round of bombing we are told that there will be no civilian casualties.

Modern bombs are so smart that they can look round corners, sort the goodies from the baddies and target with pinpoint accuracy, we are told. It just is not true.

We are witnessing the latest example of bombing in Afghanistan, in the northern city of Kunduz. Dozens of staff and patients in a hospital run by the international agency Medecins sans Frontieres have been killed or injured, apparently victims of a US air-raid which continued long after the authorities had been notified, and despite all sides being aware of its GPS coordinates.

For days now, civilian reports from Kunduz have talked of intensive air bombardment. The city was captured by the Taliban last Monday and has been the centre of fierce fighting since. It is the first major urban centre to be captured by the Taliban since its government was overthrown by Western invasion in 2001.

The events this week demonstrate that the Taliban has gained ground in the past decade, while the Afghan government only controls parts of the country, and remains totally reliant on US and other western air (and some ground) forces to ensure its rule.

The events also demonstrate that the near decade and a half of bombing, invasion, occupation, ground fighting, death, injury and displacement have been a failure.

They have left Afghanistan one of the most dangerous and poorest countries in the world, with among the greatest numbers of refugees fleeing its borders.

They have not solved the problem they were supposed to when the war on terror was launched in 2001. Terrorism has grown throughout south Asia and the Middle East. In Afghanistan, both the Taliban and  Islamic state have launched major attacks over the past months.

The victims are not usually the politicians and generals who wage wars. It’s the ordinary people who suffer. The terrible loss of life in Kunduz is one latest example of that.

Which is why the plan by David Cameron to launch airstrikes in Syria is such a bad idea. At present such strikes are being carried out by US, French and other western countries as well as by Russia. At least ten countries have bombed Syria this year and David Cameron wants to make it eleven.

The western media puts forward a number of arguments why the Russian strikes will make things worse. But every argument against Russian bombing of Syria could be used against the US bombing which has gone on for a year.

Yes it will kill civilians, yes it will increase the number of refugees, yes it will create more terrorism and yes it will escalate an already deadly war.

That is why all the bombing has to stop.

Source: Stop the War Coalition

03 Oct 2015 by Lindsey German

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